Is Nier (PS3/360) worth playing?

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#1 Edited by liquiddragon (3455 posts) -

And by that I mean, is it actually fun to play or is it more of a drag to get through to see the good stuff?

A friend of mine who use to be more of a gamer started playing Nier Automata recently and he's been updating me on his progress. In turn, it's got me thinking about Nier in general but more specifically Nier Gestalt.

Edit: I'm asking about Nier for the PS3/360. I've played Nier Automata.

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#3 Posted by Justin258 (15676 posts) -

With all of the buzz both games have received over the years, I would say that it's definitely worth giving them a shot if you're interested. I haven't personally played them, but general consensus seems to be that the gameplay's a bit wonky and sometimes repetitive but the stories, characters, atmosphere, and music all seem to be what makes those games special.

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#4 Edited by poobumbutt (961 posts) -

I agree with pretty much everything the previous poster says, with the added, more forceful addendum of "no, really. Play Nier." Automata may be my favorite game, full stop; but I still think there are some story beats and character arcs done better in Nier. It is worth it. But yeah, play on the lowest difficulty and if you can, obtain and upgrade the Phoenix Spear. It is easily the most powerful weapon in the game, and will make the back half of the game much more smooth.

I should mention in fairness though, that this is coming from someone who LOVES Yoko Taro's storytelling. Love enough to complete ALL the side missions - for those aware, yes, even the flower one. So, I guess if you are REEEEEALLY on the fence with this, then take my very insistent recommendation with a grain of salt.

EDIT: Oh, and this is a longshot, but if you're crazy-nutso enough to want to do THAT flower side mission, then get the PS3 version. The mission involves heavy real-world time passage, and only on the PS3 can you game that by changing the system clock.

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#5 Posted by Relkin (1199 posts) -

Yes it is. The gameplay is fine; it's not great, it's not bad. By the time you're about halfway to two-thirds of the way through playing it to completion (across the multiple "routes" of the game) you'll likely be pretty overpowered. By that point, however, the story will likely have dug it's claws into you enough that you'll be committed to seeing it through to the end.

In short, yes you should play it, but the combat will become pointless during the back half of the game. Just a heads-up.

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#6 Posted by Dan_CiTi (5236 posts) -


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#7 Posted by Notkcots (113 posts) -

Yeah, Nier's great. The combat is pretty interesting for the first half of the game, and the story will carry you through the latter half once you've had enough of that. I would strongly recommend completing the first playthrough and just watching the new stuff from the later playthroughs on Youtube. It's all just extra cutscenes; there's nothing interactive, and the late-game combat encounters are boring enough the first time through.

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#8 Posted by FacelessVixen (2636 posts) -

Gameplay: It's pretty much like Automata only not as good. Also, B A C K T R A C K I N G.

Story: This is why you're going back to Nier 1. There is a shit load of stuff to digest if you've only played Automata and know nothing about Drakengard, though Mr Clemps could fill you in on those details in great spoilerific detail.

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#9 Posted by Zeik (5205 posts) -

Yeah, it's worth it. While the gameplay isn't amazing, it's serviceable enough to not bring down the stuff it does well.

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#10 Posted by TechnoSyndrome (1614 posts) -

Yes, the combat is totally serviceable and I'd maybe even argue is better than Automata's. While Automata's combat has more going on in it, you never actually need to use most of it and end up just abusing the dodge a lot. I became sick of the fighting in Automata a lot sooner than I did the originals.

Also don't listen to anyone telling you to just watch stuff on YouTube, you have to experience the game for yourself.

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#11 Edited by LeStephan (1215 posts) -

Yes do it!:)

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#12 Posted by shivermetimbers (1718 posts) -

The game can be far up its own ass at times. It's making fun of game design tropes while doing the game design tropes. But if you don't mind that, there's something special about it.

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#13 Posted by Humanity (18853 posts) -

I think it asks a lot from the player, but when you're in you're in.

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#14 Posted by Efesell (4538 posts) -

Don't do the side quests.

Or at least don't approach with the mentality of I should do all these side quests.

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#15 Edited by Zeik (5205 posts) -

@TechnoSyndrome: I wouldn't fault anyone for not wanting to go through all the effort for the last two endings and just looking it up on Youtube. It's more effort than it's worth, honestly. (And if you've play Automata it won't have quite the same impact.)

Not that I'm recommending to NOT do it. If you have the patience it's always better to earn that stuff yourself.

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#16 Edited by doctordonkey (1843 posts) -

I'm gonna say no, I bought it for 20$ back in the day and managed to get half way through before I set it down. I just don't think it's worth slogging through for the story. It's sorta interesting, but not that interesting, really.

I did enjoy Automata, though. Despite the awful (by Platinum's standards) combat. it does some really fantastic stuff with its narrative.

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#17 Edited by Zeik (5205 posts) -

@doctordonkey: Most of the really interesting story stuff is in the back half/two-thirds. It starts out (arguably intentionally) kind of generic fantasy/RPG, but by the end it rivals or surpasses Automata's story. (Although I would still say Automata executes its story better.)

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#18 Posted by Zippedbinders (1198 posts) -

Having to redo the last hour or two about 4 times? Eh, not super worth it, but the rest of the game is absolutely worth it. There's some really cool stuff in there.

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#19 Edited by Cure_Optimism (81 posts) -

There are a lot of hints about a Nier remaster in the works. I'm waiting for that rather than digging my Xbox out of the garage. I've played like 10 hours of Nier years ago and enjoyed it but never finished it, and I haven't played Automata yet. A PC remaster of the first so I can play them both on the same platform would be great. Nier gets kind of a bad rap, but most who ignore that and hunker down and play it seem to think it's a real underrated gem of the 7th console generation.

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#20 Posted by berfunkle (186 posts) -


At least it was for me.

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#21 Posted by liquiddragon (3455 posts) -

@zeik: How do you go about seeing through the game? Is it the same way as Nier Automata? Just keeping playing after credits?

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#22 Posted by TheChris (537 posts) -

Yes, vastly better than Automata in anything but the combat.

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#23 Posted by Zeik (5205 posts) -

@zeik: How do you go about seeing through the game? Is it the same way as Nier Automata? Just keeping playing after credits?

It's set up similar to Automata, where multiple playthroughs are required to see the full story. So getting the first ending will unlock the second, then third and fourth. The last two endings really don't have anything different except the ending though, and you need to collect every weapon in the game to unlock it. Fortunately you can keep a save before the choice given during the final ending (kinda like route C/D in Automata) so you don't have to play a 4th time, but that 3rd playthrough is a bit of a slog.

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#24 Posted by liquiddragon (3455 posts) -

@zeik: ok, thanks. Did you have to use a guide to get all the weapons? Difficult?

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#25 Posted by DKZK21 (3 posts) -

The main gameplay design from Nier can be considered something of a prototype to Nier Automata. Many of the elements that Automata is known for like the switching camera perspective and shmup sections have their roots in Nier. In a way, Nier actually goes beyond Automata in its gameplay variety and willingness to try to keep things fresh, though inversely because of that same push for variety there is much less polish to each of those individual parts of the game. To say that the game plays like just a generic action adventure with RPG elements is a bit of a disservice to the game, though there is definitely plenty about it deserving of criticism.

That being said, I personally found the sidequests adequate in a mindless questing sort of way, though there is definitely incentive to play them. While most are simple throwaway fetch quests (save for a few stand-outs), there's a lot of minor chit-chat dialogue and interactions between the main cast while you run around from quest to quest that add up and help flesh out their personalities. As a matter of fact, this kind of storytelling and character development is spread out through all of the game, all of which you might miss if you just watch a big YT video of the cutscenes and the Clemps' analysis videos.

So in conclusion, I would say yes, the game is worth playing for its gameplay, even though the story, its themes and the characters are the main draw here. There's a lot of flaws to the overall execution of many elements, but none of it would detract me from recommending the game to someone that already has some level of interest in trying out the game.

Except maybe for the Forest of Myth *shudders*

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